The Great Pokemon Conspiracy

Silly accidents, blatant trespassing and crime by the Team Rockets of the real world have followed Pokemon GO’s release, and now, conspiracy...

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As hoards of the phone-obsessed throng our streets, conspiracy is on everyone’s speculative mind, leading to some grandiose, and dubious, claims.

What if…

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Why else would the game drain our batteries so quickly? Or…

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What if, indeed.

For more on possible Poke-plots lurking behind all that kawaii, grab your tin foil hats as we start our speculation sifting. Conspiracy Hunters, GO!

  1. Pokemon GO = Chinese Military Base Detector


Pikachu Pixel Art belongs to Miksvan


Originating on China’s social media, the claim goes that armies of excited Pokemon players could spell China’s doom. By looking everywhere for adorable critters using the location-tracking game, they would in effect unwittingly map out all the inaccessible areas of the country, which include (cue dramatic whisper) the secret military bases. Thus allowing the US and Japan to bomb China into oblivion (why else was the game created in Japan and the United States?)


Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang has publicly brushed aside the Pokemon GO security risk, so officially it’s bunk. Still, looking at the power of Pokemon to cause mass trainer migrations and inspire extraordinary foolhardiness to explore cliffs, underground caves or even minefields, you have to wonder if they’re on to something…

2. Pokemon GO = A Data Cartel’s Money-making Scheme



People don’t spend enough money on data plans, using free wifi in hotspots and actually switching off their phones at night. To combat this thrifty trend, data providers banded together to make people run after virtual critters at all hours outside (and run up gigabytes of data bills) thanks to their Machiavellian invention: Pokemon GO.


As sound as one of Team Rocket’s plans. Your data mileage might vary, but even with the upper limit of 20 megabytes per hour, it would still take 3 hours of Pokemon hunting daily or 90 hours a month, to exhaust a simple 2GB plan. And even if you burn extra data, you’re also burning lots of calories, so you could also say this plot was hatched by one diabolical fitness guru.

3. Pokemon GO = Satanic Infiltration


Pokemon GO logo image belongs to BagoGames


Russian leaders are seeing the devil in Pokemon GO, and no, it’s not Gengar. “There is a feeling that the devil came through this mechanism and is simply trying to destroy us spiritually from within” causing “promiscuity and permissiveness”, claims a senior senator. An ultraconservative group put it pithily: “this in general smacks of Satan”. Could the devil be mangling morality through this collection of cuddly critters? 


The Prince of Darkness probably has better ways to encourage casual sex than with child-friendly Pokemon. Still the degradation has started. As Pokemon continue to pop up in the most inappropriate places, the inevitable chance has arisen – I mean sprung up – I mean surfaced – I mean happened, for that viral dick joke fad with the help of some carefully placed Diglets.

4. Pokemon GO = Big Brother’s All-Seeing Eye

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Internet Surveillance belongs to Mike Licht


What does Pokemon GO offer intelligence agencies that Google Earth can’t? A peek inside your home. All the cute photos of Pokemon throughout your home can be taken and compiled into a 3D map of your house, for say, monitoring your every move, all made possible by Pokemon GO’s suspiciously open privacy policy. And look! The game has links to the CIA (Pokemon GO was created by Niantic Labs, which was founded by John Hanke, who also founded Keyhole Inc., which received funding from In-Q-Tel, a venture capital firm backed by the CIA). “Catching them all” must mean more than Pokemon!


A glance at Engadget shrinks this mountainous claim into a molehill. While Pokemon GO’s permission requests had to be corrected on iphones, it never gave permission for a third party to access user files willy-nilly. Which means, despite the arrival of Psychic Pokemon, an all-seeing surveillance system a la Minority Report is still far off.

Conspiracies make for a good laugh (or a nervous one if you’re paranoidly awed by Pokemon GO’s popularity). But one conspiracy is undeniable. Niantic and Nintendo are conspiring to make tons of dough, and actually getting people to head outdoors in the process.

Bring it on.


Feature image:

Pikachu Pixel Art belongs to Miksvan

Dollar Bill Eye of Providence belongs to Mark Turnauckas

Written by Vincent Tan